Hydrogeological map launched

15 October 2021 | Environment

Windhoek • [email protected]

The minister of agriculture, water and land reform says that, in his opinion, a total ban on prospecting and mining activities should be placed on the vulnerable Stampriet aquifer.

“Exploration in the aquifer should be considered very carefully. According to available information, the source was already exposed to significant risks during the exploration phase, as well as during the extraction phase.”

Minister Calle Schlettwein said this on Friday at the launch of the third edition of Namibia's hydrogeological map, in response to journalists’ questions about plans for a uranium mine in the Leonardville area and its impact on that aquifer.

“The fact is, there is mining inside the aquifer and seepage is already taking place. The polluted water is released inside the aquifer. We believe there is a significant risk of seepage and pollution, depending on where the boreholes are sunk and how far the water extends. We believe this aquifer is far too valuable for the entire Kalahari community for us to take risks that could completely destroy it or restrict its use,” he said.

Schlettwein added that Namibia should, as the driest country south of the Sahara, declare certain zones and certain groundwater reservoirs as protected areas. “It would be foolish if we allowed commercial activities to threaten it. Mining within an aquifer should be carefully considered and probably completely banned - especially if these minerals are also available elsewhere. We should react quickly and effectively, before damage is done. The prospecting within an aquifer is not sustainable. There are areas where little water is available, so it is very valuable and there must be rules for its use."

At the forefront

The map of Namibia's underground water resources, which also shows how vulnerable the various resources are, to what extreme water is extracted, what the quality of the water is, and how quickly and efficiently it is refilled, is the third edition and contains the latest data sets about this.

It is available online (www.na-mis.com) as well as in textbook form.

Schlettwein said it was a vital collection of geohydrological information and its launch puts Namibia in a leading position on the continent in terms of national water management.

He says Namibia is also taking the lead on the continent with the reuse of grey water.

“Furthermore, the country is also setting the tone by artificially replenishing underground water sources such as the Windhoek aquifer in times when dams are full.”

Schlettwein said that according to the latest data, 60% of all water used in Namibia comes from groundwater.


He says the map and textbook were first published in December 2001 and then again ten years later in 2011. “As the custodian of underground water resources in Namibia, the ministry has decided to issue an updated version, which is used everywhere for the management of underground water.

“The review process involved using the latest, updated geological data and groundwater data from recent projects.”

He said the ministry had used money made available by the SADC Institute for Underground Water Management (SADC-GMI) for this.

Schlettwein said that in addition to the fact that the map can now serve as a resource for national development planning, it also offers researchers the opportunity to determine where further research is needed and where further exploration work can be done.

Similar News


Namibia’s desert lions in dire straits

22 hours ago | Environment

Following reports and photos received recently of the Obab lion pride that roams the central western area of the Palmwag concession and the Skeleton Coast...

Suspected avian flu being investigated

4 days ago - 14 January 2022 | Environment

Swakopmund • ad[email protected] Following a major outbreak of avian influenza in South Africa’s Western Cape a few months ago that killed almost 25 000...

Increase in whale strandings not a worrisome occurrence

1 week ago - 07 January 2022 | Environment

Swakopmund • [email protected] Fourteen 14 whale strandings and mortalities were recorded along Namibia’s coast, 10 of which were during December, and one in...

Dolphin project calls for assistance

2 weeks ago - 31 December 2021 | Environment

Swakopmund • [email protected] The Namibia Dolphin Project (NDP) has requested the public to report any seals with monitoring devices that they may find along...

Damning conservation report ‘illegal and unethical’

3 weeks ago - 29 December 2021 | Environment

Windhoek • [email protected] Namibian communal conservancies have condemned an investigation by two environmental journalists into the country’s conservation programme, saying facts were twisted to...

273 caught for wildlife crimes in 2021

4 weeks ago - 21 December 2021 | Environment

Windhoek • [email protected] total of 273 suspects were arrested in connection with wildlife crimes this year and 144 cases were registered.This is according to the...

Coastal park management plans launched

4 weeks ago - 21 December 2021 | Environment

Windhoek ∙ [email protected] Park management plans have been launched for the Skeleton Coast, Dorob and Namib-Naukluft national parks in the Erongo Region.At the same...

Latest giraffe numbers give hope

1 month - 16 December 2021 | Environment

Swakopmund • [email protected] A report issued by the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF) headquartered in Namibia stated that since the last assessment by the International...

Protect Namibia’s natural resources

1 month - 29 November 2021 | Environment

Windhoek ∙ [email protected] Environment minister Pohamba Shifeta says the need to protect Namibia’s natural resources cannot be overemphasised, as it has a profound effect...

Air pollution: Namibia ‘skating on thin ice’

2 months ago - 18 November 2021 | Environment

The unregulated production of charcoal poses a serious health hazard to farmworkers who are exposed to life-threatening emissions without any recourse in sight, Auditor-General (AG)...

Latest News

Swakop completes N$7 million road...

16 hours ago | Infrastructure

Swakopmund • [email protected] Roads around schools at Swakopmund are going to become safer after the Swakopmund municipality recently announced it was going to...

Namibia’s desert lions in dire...

22 hours ago | Environment

Following reports and photos received recently of the Obab lion pride that roams the central western area of the Palmwag concession and the Skeleton Coast...

More lives lost due to...

22 hours ago | Ministries

Health minister Kalumbi Shangula has expressed his concern about the increasing number of people who are reinfected with Covid-19. Namibia recorded 1 876 reinfections since...

NaTIS tackles licence backlog

23 hours ago | Local News

Windhoek • [email protected] New bookings for student licences at NaTIS have been temporarily suspended so that the huge backlog can be made up.According to...

Grumpy’s fishing report

23 hours ago | Fishing

Angling the past week was great with the beaches being relatively quiet since most holidaymakers are back at work. Our pick of the week is...

‘Free water’ costs hundreds of...

23 hours ago | Local News

Windhoek • [email protected] The provision of free water to vulnerable communities in informal settlements since April 2020, has almost doubled the debt of municipalities,...

NSA secures funding for delayed...

2 days ago - 16 January 2022 | Local News

Windhoek ∙ Ogone Tlhage The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) will be able to conduct its census later this after securing funding for the...

The Audi Q5, SQ5 Sportback

2 days ago - 16 January 2022 | Motors

Following the Q3 Sportback and the e-tron Sportback, Audi now presents its third crossover utility vehicle, the first-ever Q5 Sportback. This coupé with dynamic lines...

Drones delivering to your doorstep

2 days ago - 16 January 2022 | Technology

Windhoek • [email protected] Namibia will most likely start using drones to deliver medicine to remote locations within the next few weeks.This comes after a...

Load More